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Matic ‘shirt number revealed’ as United close in on £40m Chelsea midfielder

Date Posted,July 30, 2017

Nemanja Matic will wear the No.31 shirt at Manchester United.

The midfielder has signed on the dotted line at Old Trafford after the Red Devils agreed a £50million fee with Chelsea.

A picture of Matic circulated on social media on Sunday, appearing to be wearing United training gear, report the Manchester Evening News.

Matic donned the number 31 for his medical, and it has now been confirmed he will take the shirt vacant since Bastian Schweinsteiger’s departure.

Schweinsteiger received his favoured number 31 from Marouane Fellaini upon joining United in 2015. United are yet to officially confirm their list of squad numbers for the forthcoming campaign but new signings Victor Lindelof and Romelu Lukaku will wear two and nine.

Andreas Pereira has sported the number 15 during United’s pre-season fixtures, which suggests he could be bumped up from 44.

Schweinstwiger was the last to wear the No.31 shirt for United (Image: Gareth Copley)
Matic wears the No.21 for the Serbia national team (Image: Getty)

Matic could make his first United appearance in Wednesday’s friendly with Sampdoria in Dublin before a possible competitive debut in the Super Cup against Real Madrid on Tuesday week.

United have admired Matic since David Moyes’ brief tenure and a source described him as ‘institutionally liked’ by the club’s scouts. Moyes was well poised to sign Matic in 2014 but the Scot dithered over a deal and Mourinho convinced Matic to rejoin Chelsea for £21m.

Mourinho wanted to sign Matic last year but Chelsea coach Antonio Conte blocked a move and the Serbia international started 38 Premier League games as the Stamford Bridge club regained the title.

United also considered Tottenham’s Eric Dier to reinforce their midfield but Matic was deemed more attainable and Mourinho is more familiar with the Serbia international, having managed him for nearly two years at Chelsea.

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